From Empire …to umpire

Well, it’s all over now…QE II has been interred in her grave with all the pomp and glory that Britain was able to muster. What was it the Bard from Avon – who flourished under QE I – advised in these matters?? In his classic “Julius Caesar” –  who knew a thing or two about Empires – he had Mark Antony say, “The evil that men do lives after them, the good is oft interred with their bones.” Well, from all that has been said from across the world – especially from the now extinct British Empire – while the consensus was QE II didn’t have too many sins of commission, the consensus was there were plenty sins of omission! They’ll live on?
Most folks felt that since 1952, after being briefed EVERY WEEK by her Prime Ministers – she couldn’t say a thing or two about all the violence that was being perpetrated in her name across the Empire?? Let’s take Kenya from where she had to fly home to accept the Crown. Couldn’t she’ve told Churchill that he couldn’t just torture and incarcerate thousands – and kill hundreds – of Kikiyus whose lands were being seized??  We’re told she was a woman who was deeply Christian – and could always be counted to offer some homilies to suffering persons she encountered in Britain. Weren’t the people in the Empire, humans and brothers too?
Here in Guyana, there was a good old-fashioned Mass at St George’s Cathedral in her memory. The Monarch is the Head of the Anglican Church and very fittingly St George was the Patron Saint of England. He supposedly has the courage to face adversity in order to defend the innocent. But for some reason he didn’t defend the 12 million innocents who were shipped across the Atlantic from Africa to the Americas nor the 10 million innocents who perished in Bengal as recently as 1943 – when grain was shipped from that province to feed Brits during WWII.
Your Eyewitness hopes former President David Granger was invited to the Mass. Apart from being a devout Anglican, he offered the deepest bow your Eyewitness had ever seen to QE II when he was given an audience in April 2017. Your Eyewitness figured that even though Burnham had eschewed British honorifics, Mr Granger was probably harking back to his training as a BRITISH army officer at Mons in 1965. We weren’t independent as yet!!
Now, as your Eyewitness has advised, hopefully the Brits will now engage in some deep soul searching. From the Empire that QE I launched, QV extended and now QE II had ruled for 70 years, Britain went from empire to umpire – at best for the Commonwealth!
Maybe it’s time to chuck it in??

…to neo-colonialism
While some might’ve questioned the conditions under which we were granted “independence” from – and by – the Brits under Burnham, he did try to veer off the path they’d planned for us. But Burnham and most of the other “briefcase” PMs across the Empire – who also got their constitutions in a complimentary briefcase at Lancaster House – didn’t realise something. To use one of Burnham’s turns of phrase – there were many ways to kill a cat!!
So, no matter how he tried to cut links to the Empire – nationalising sugar, bauxite, wharves, stores, etc – they could always yank Burnham’s chain. Very simply after WWII, the Yanks – who’d taken over from the Brits – had established the Breton Woods Sisters – the IMF and World Bank – who’d do the yanking!! Even though Burnham cursed the IMF as “International Mother F*****”, he had to kowtow when things went south!!
In the end, his successor Hoyte signed along the dotted line. So, have we cut those chains from our legs yet??

…to independence
Now we’ve got our own funding spigot from oil, we don’t need no IMF/World Bank, right?? Ghana thought so when they struck oil in 2007 – but they’re back in the arms of the IMF!! Gotta be careful!!